Victoria-An intimate look at the Woman behind the Crown and her childhood

Victoria-An intimate look at the Woman behind the Crown and her childhood

It was the first day of the Discover the real Victoria, made in Kensington Exhibition, 24th May, a glorious day of summer sunshine and the Palace grounds were a busy sight! People sunbathing, reading or just relaxing.

The queues to the ticket office was long…

Kensington Palace: The queues at the ticket office for, Discover the Real Victoria exhibition was long!
Kensington Palace: The queues at the ticket office for, Discover the Real Victoria exhibition was long!

Fortunately for me, I did not have to wait in queue to get a ticket with a timed entry. As a Member of the Historic Royal Palaces, I get to visit at anytime and as many times as I wish. You can read more on the benefits of this Individual Membership here

Here’s how my day went at the exhibition in Kensington Palace.

Discover the Real Victoria Exhibition

The exhibition was in two parts – Victoria: Woman and Crown and Victoria: A Royal Childhood.

1 | Victoria: A Royal Childhood

Victoria, A Royal Childhood was the first of the two exhibitions where I began my tour.

It was not overwhelmingly crowded as I anticipated it to be. I had plenty of time on my hands and I did not want to rush through. The exhibition allowed the visitors to follow a route through a suite of rooms and it did give me a feel of how Victoria grew up. There were many rooms here, and these have been curated to reflect how they would have been when young Victoria grew up. I will just mention a few that is of interest and which relates to the exhibition particularly the Red Saloon room, the Dance room, the Baby room, and the Playrooms.

Read: Kensington Palace – Why you should visit this 18th century historical gem

1.1 | The Red Saloon room

Victoria's first meeting with her senior ministers in the Red Saloon Room
Victoria’s first meeting with her senior ministers in the Red Saloon Room

The Red Saloon Room was where Queen Victoria held her first meeting with the Privy Council, the most senior ministers and advisors, on 20th June 1837.It was laid out with pretty little miniature figurines on top of the large long table, depicting the scene as painted by Sir David Wilkie (1785-1841) in 1838.

Kensington Palace: Red Saloon Room - First Council Meeting of Queen Victoria by Sir David Wilkie in 1838
Kensington Palace: Red Saloon Room – First Council Meeting of Queen Victoria by Sir David Wilkie in 1838

1.2 | The Dance Room where Victoria had her first dance with Albert

The dance room was dimly lit with a piano in one corner of the room.

I thought that the room was rather small. It was a little crowded here, so I walked briskly through to the next room.

1.3 | The Baby Room where Victoria was born

Kensington Palace: A Royal Childhood - The Baby Room where Victoria was born
Kensington Palace: A Royal Childhood – The Baby Room where Victoria was born | Image: georgina_daniel

The baby room where Princess Victoria was born was one of the highlights of my visit.

The room was dressed in green wallpaper which, perhaps, reflects her maternal Leiningen heritage. It was gently warm, the drapes neatly pulled back and the sunlight coming through. It was not difficult to imagine for a moment, stepping back into history, where the room was the same, and the glorious sunshine streaming through on a very ordinary Spring morning, same day in May, 200 years ago. Described as “a pretty little Princess, as plump as a partridge” by her Mother, the Duchess of Kent in a personal letter, the heir, fifth in line to the throne was born.

Queen V_3
Victoria, Duchess of Kent with Victoria, later Queen Victoria, c.1824 (enamel on copper), Henry Bone (1755-1834) / Royal Collection Trust © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, 2018 (credit to: http://blog.bridgemanimages.com/

I remained fascinated with the unfolding of her story as I continued on to Her playrooms.

1.4 | Victoria’s Playroom

Her playrooms were well laid out with a toy box in the centre of the room. There was an invitation for children to sit on the carpet and play with the toys from the toy box, a gesture which I thought was unusual. I have visited many palaces and castles during my visits and usually there are signs that says “please do not touch” – I was pleasantly surprised that here, and I welcome the idea too, to engage children-visitors to get the feel of how Victoria played.

I was enchanted with Victoria’s doll house, with its miniature furniture and pretty colours. It was an ordinary London townhouse. It is thought that it was probably made by the palace staff with household bibs and bobs and scrapes of pretty pink palace wallpaper.

Kensington Palace: A Royal Childhood - Victoria's Doll House
Kensington Palace: A Royal Childhood – Victoria’s Doll House

The Ten Wooden Peg Dolls caught my attention. Victoria started collecting these when she was 11 years old. After two years, she had 132 dolls, each with a name and its own background story either after her favourite dancers or imaginary ladies.

1.5 | Victoria’s Journal and Kensington System

Victoria had vivid imagination and would describe the characters in detail. She was lost in writing her own stories.

IMG_2231 (2)
Kensington Palace: A Royal Childhood – Kensington System Rules

The rooms displayed her journal entries and, in some instances her handwritten entries. These captivated my interests and I spent some time reading them. The sight of “Kensington System” hung on the wall and the distressing effects of these rules did not go amiss but I remained fascinated by her story.

1.6 | Theatre Room

There was a Theatre room which was cute. Victoria loved the theatre, and she attended the concerts and the theatre shows as often as she could. It was one way to escape the constraints of the “Kensington System”.

Kensington Palace: A Royal Childhood - The Theatre Room where Victoria visited to escape the Kensington System
Kensington Palace: A Royal Childhood – The Theatre Room where Victoria visited to escape the Kensington System

From the Royal Childhood of Victoria, the exhibition continued on to Woman and Crown Exhibition.

Read: Kensington Palace Gardens – an idyllic getaway from chaos of the City

2 | Victoria – Woman and Crown (1819-1901)

Kensington Palace: Victoria - Woman and Crown (1819-1901)
Kensington Palace: Victoria – Woman and Crown (1819-1901)

There were a lot of information exhibited here and dresses she wore. This exhibition was aimed at unveiling the private life of Queen Victoria behind the carefully controlled public image of her role as queen, wife, mother and empress.

2.1 | Victoria as a Woman

IMG_2328 (2)
Kensington Palace: Victoria – Woman and Crown Exhibition, The Secret Portrait of Queen Victoria, by Franz Xaver Winterhalter in 1843, Lent by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for the exhibition.

As a woman, Victoria was totally in love with Prince Albert. She commissioned a secret portrait of herself as a surprise gift to Prince Albert for his 24th birthday. The portrait shows Victoria in a simple ivory gown, looking relaxed, with her long hair round her shoulders in a sensuous manner – intended for his eyes only!

2.2 | Victoria as a Woman

As a wife, Victoria adored her husband, Prince Albert. In her words, he was “an angel whose brightness shall illuminate my life” – she submitted to the choices of her husband in all matters.

The dresses and the jewellery she wore was often designed and chosen by Albert. They both often appeared in public together which made them popular with the nation. 

IMG_2320 (2)
The original colour of this dress was bright pink . Queen Victoria wore a bonnet so as not to upstage her husband.

One of the displays exhibited a gown worn by Victoria which was originally in bright pink and fashionable at that time. Queen Victoria always wore a bonnet when in public with Prince Albert because she did not want to upstage her husband who had no right to wear a crown. A stark contrast to the black gowns, and widow’s bonnet which she was so famous for wearing later in life.

2.3 | Victoria as a Mother

As a mother, I think her views can best be attributed to one of her journal entries in 1952: 

“Children, though often a source of anxiety and difficulty, are a great blessing and cheer and brighten up life, and to see us after 12 years surrounded by this blooming family is a source of great gratitude”

2.4 | Victoria as an Empress

IMG_2345 (2)
Kensington Palace: Victoria, Woman and Crown Exhibition – Victoria’s love affair with India takes centre stage at the Exhibition | Image: georgina_daniel

As an empress of the world’s largest empire, the exhibits displayed the story behind her love affair with India, the Koh-i-Noor diamond, her friendship with deposed Maharajah Duleep Singh.

IMG_2343 (2)
Kensington Palace: Victoria, Woman and Crown Exhibition – Personal diary of Queen Victoria with inscriptions in Urdu | Image: georgina_daniel

There were exhibits of her personal diaries inscribed in Urdu.

2.5 | Victoria’s love affair with the Scottish Highlands

There were further exhibits on her visits to the Scottish Highlands and Balmoral. The couple’s first visit was in 1848 and she captured their first moments in her journal entry where she wrote:

“All seemed to breathe freedom and peace, and to make one forget the world and its sad turmoils”

They loved the mountains, the people, the highland games and the dances.

Queen Victoria published a book in 1868, ‘Leaves from the Journal of our Life in the Highlands from 1848 – 1861’ – this book were of extracts from her journal, of her time in Scotland with Albert.  The book sold 80,000 copies in the first 3 months. You can purchase a copy by clicking the link below:

Read more on 200th Anniversary of Queen Victoria’s Birth – this blog contains a video on Balmoral Castle which gives a splendid view of the beauty of Scottish Highlands.

2.6 | Victoria’s love affair with Isle of Wight

Queen Victoria once said of Osborne House, that “it would be impossible to imagine a prettier spot” and one could not agree with her more! Osborne House became her permanent home till her death in 1901.

Read: Isle of Wight and the Victorian Love Affair with the island

Travel tips and Useful information:

Tickets

Visiting during Covid-19 and adhering to safety measures – Pre-booking and selecting a specific time slot is required prior to the day of your visit. All related information are here for you to peruse.

Tickets are £17.50 for Adults    and     £8.70 for Child

The ticket covers entry to Kensington Palace and the Discover the Real Victoria – Made in Kensington Exhibition.

You may wish to consider purchasing an Annual Membership with the Historic Royal Palaces which grants you unlimited access to 6 Royal Palaces including Kensington Palace.

Opening Times

Monday-Sunday: 10:00-18:00

Last admission: 17:00

Getting here

Kensington Palace, Kensington Gardens,

London W8 4PX

Public Transport

London Underground and trains

High Street Kensington station (10 – 15 minute walk) – for the District, Circle and Piccadilly lines

Queensway station (10 – 15 minute walk) – for the Central line

Notting Hill Gate station (20 – 25 minute walk) – for Central, District and Circle lines

Paddington station (20 minute walk)

Bus

Routes 70, 94, 148, and 390 stop along Bayswater Road

Routes 9, 10, 49, 52, 70 and 452 stop along Kensington High Street


Is this post valuable to you in aiding your travel plans to Kensington Palace? if so, let me know in comments below or via Contact Form. I would love to hear from you.

Happy adventures!

March 2021, Update


March 2021, Update


More to read – navigate via the images

Tower of London | History and Traditions
BEAUCHAMP TOWER
Anne boleyn
Interesting books on the Boleyns
Books on Prisoners of the Bloody Tower
London - Tours of Parks and Gardens

Latest articles to peruse

Szentendre — 1 Perfect Day Trip from Budapest

Szentendre day trip from Budapest | timelesstravelsteps.com

Szentendre — A Perfect Day Trip from Budapest

Szentendre, the quaint heritage town on the Danube Bend is an expanding happy hug of colours, of baroque-style houses painted in yellow, orange or pink and some in white that had been here for some time. The narrow cobblestone main street leads on to shops, museums and places to eat on both sides of the street, with welcoming retailers. The river town’s architecture of simplicity exudes a Mediterranean atmosphere, while the churches and cobblestone streets are testament to the human footprint since time gone-by, as far back as the Romans, I am told. The narrow alleys swirl around the main square as petals to a rose with sunlight keeping the town in ever-glow.

The people here are warm, welcoming, helpful and patient. Proud of their rich heritage, showcasing their priceless collections of art and crafts.

A cultural hot spot, Szentendre is uniquely set apart from its neighbours as a serene neighbourhood for artists, with the number of exceptional galleries and museums that seem endless.

The calm and secluded town of Szentendre, is a welcome escape as one perfect day trip from Budapest, the bustling capital city of Hungary. Located at a stone’s throw from the city at 22 kilometres (13.6 miles), the quintessential town is conveniently reached by boat, bike bus, car or train. Rich in history, cultural traditions and the many gastronomical delights makes this wonderful haven worth a visit.

We thoroughly enjoyed all that Szentendre had to offer on a day trip from Budapest. Know also, that Szentendre is a popular tourist destination, which means gift shops and tourism oriented shops abound here, where one can easily fall into a ‘trap’. Nevertheless, Szentendre is worth the journey if you have the time to venture out of Budapest.

Szentendre day trip from Budapest | timelesstravelsteps.com

This article and related articles are sprinkled with affiliate links. We may earn a commission from qualified purchases and bookings at no additional cost to you. These links have no influence on the editorial content we produce. Our travel to Budapest, Hungary was 100% self-funded.


Timeless Travel Steps BEST TIPS:

Book tours and tickets in advance: Best tours in Budapest. Select the Budapest City Card for free entrance to museums, a guided tour, discounts and unlimited use of public transport.

Szentendre and Danube Bend Day Trip with Lunch


Subscribe to Timeless Travel Steps and Stay Connected


Follow Timeless Travel Steps on Instagram


History of Szentender – An Overview

Szentendre, known as St Andrews in English has a rich history that goes way back to the Romans, but the area was largely uninhabited when the Magyars arrived in the 9th century. A settlement was reestablished on the ruins of Roman buildings and fortresses. Not much is known of this little town during the 9th and 10th centuries. Fast-forward to the 17th century, only one family and their staff remained here (according to a census at the time). In the late 17th century, during the Great Turkish War, Serbian refugees were invited to settle in Szentendre. The population continued to increase and Szentendre was recognised as a ‘City’ in 1872.

Over the years, Szentendre became a fusion of Hungarian and Serbian cultures, along with other cultures from the Balkans and Carpathian Basin. The peaceful coexistence, and integration is evident through the city’s unique architectural design and the places of worship of Catholic and Orthodox Christianity. The blending of cultures culminating in a unique community determines the spirit of the town. Today, this quintessential town is home to a multicultural society, with five different active churches and five different religions, all living side by side.

The city’s living heritage is emblematic in the artistic freedom found here. The peaceful rhythm attracted artists and writers since the beginning of the 20th century, with a substantial pool of artists in 1929, including Lajos Vajda, Imre Amos and Jeno Barcsay. In 1977, The Szentendre Old Colony of Artists Cultural Association was formed. It’s purpose is to save and preserve the old colony of artists, to keep the tradition and to continue its spirit.

art scene Szentendre | timelesstravelsteps.com

The active art scene is very much present today, from the numerous galleries and museums dotted around Szentendre. Presently, Szentendre is home to more than 200 fine artists, authors, poets , actors and musicians. Additionally, the city hosts Art Capital, an annual main art event in Hungary.

Read: What to do at Castle Hill, Budapest – A Complete Guide to All the Unmissable Things to do.

How to Get to Szentendre from Budapest

You can get to Szentendre from Budapest by boat, car, bus, train or on a guided tour.

The quickest way to get to Szentendre from Budapest is by train. Board the suburban rail line HÉV  from Batthyány tér to Szentendre station. Journey time is approximately 40 minutes, and there is one every 20 minutes. You can buy tickets from the machines at the station.

The cheapest way is to take the bus. Board the bus at Budapest Árpád híd M which will take you to Szentendre Autóbusz-Állomás. Costs between €1.20 – €2.40

For a scenic route, take the river cruise. Cruises cost €9.00 one way. Cruises are seasonal and only operate from mid-April to the end of August, sometimes into September. Boats leave Vigado Square in Budapest at 10:30 and return from Szentendre at 5:00 pm. The journey upstream to Szentendre is 1.5 hour and the return journey is 50 minutes.

Join a guided tour. The journey by car from Budapest to Szentendre is approximately 30 minutes. A hotel pick-up is included if your hotel is within the city centre of Budapest. Your knowledgeable guide will highlight the best museums and galleries to visit and take you to some off-the-beaten paths as well. You take the cruise back to Budapest.

Read: 31 Very Best Things to do in Verona, Italy

WHAT TO SEE AND DO IN SZENTENDRE ON A DAY TRIP FROM BUDAPEST

Here are some of the best of the city to see and do when you visit Szentendre on a day trip from Budapest.

1 | Exploring Szentendre

The best way to explore Szentendre is by just walking. Szentendre is a perfect little town where you could walk the main street, explore the narrow alleys, stop at the many museums and galleries while completely embracing the slow rhythm of the city. Look out for the hidden stairs that lead to more charming cafes. The colourful umbrellas, and buckets turned upside-down will no doubt, bring on a smile. The gentle pastel along with vibrant colours of the houses, the cobblestone streets and the whimsical architecture of the past gives a feeling of travelling back in time. You could spend hours wandering around this peaceful town.

While you wander, wonder, ponder, smile, stop for coffee, chat to the vendors and click-away for some amazing memories, also experience the following 11 highlights along the way.

2 | Hungarian Open Air Museum | Szentendre Skanzen Village Museum

Szentendre | day trip from Budapest || timelesstravelsteps.com

If you wish to explore the history of the Hungarian way of life, a visit to the Hungarian Open Air Museum is the best place to be. It is the largest outdoor museum in Hungary dedicated to the cultural and historic preservation of Hungarian villages and way of life. Founded in 1967, the museum showcases Carpathian folk culture and life in various areas of Hungary.

Situated within a nature reserve, at the foot of Pilis Mountains, the Skanzen Village Museum covers an area of 60 hectares. Home to about 312 buildings and all buildings are open to the public. The permanent old buildings are exhibited in a traditional settlement pattern, depicting life some 100 to 200 years ago. Set amidst peaceful natural surroundings of flora and fauna makes a visit to the Hungarian Open Air Museum that much more special.

Skanzen Village Museum is perfect for family day out. Kids learn the Hungarian way of life, participate in interactive displays in the Little Shop and Photographer’s Studio.

Opens: 9:00 A.M.

Where: Szentendre, Sztaravodai út 75, 2000 Hungary

You may also like: 28 Unmissable Best Things to do in Amsterdam

3 | Ferenczy Museum

Visit the famous Ferenczy Museum located inside an 18th century historic building, Pajor Mansion. The museum was established in 1951 to house paintings and art featuring scenes of local Szentendre. Presently, the museum features artworks of Károly Ferenczy and his family along with temporary exhibitions, including history, visual arts, ethnographic exhibits and mostly on contemporary art.

Opens: 10:00 A.M.

Address: Szentendre, Kossuth Lajos u. 5, 2000 Hungary

4 | Őri-Art Gallery

An exclusive, private art gallery and museum tucked away in a peaceful street, in the oldest part of the city, surrounded by medieval buildings and churches. Őri-Art Gallery features contemporary Hungarian Art created by local artists. The exhibition includes remarkable paintings, bronze and ceramic sculptures, Zsolnay porcelain statues, jewellery, wood carvings, and so many more unique artistic objects.

Enjoy a cup or two of freshly brewed tea while unhurriedly, you look for a one-of-a-kind art piece or art jewellery for that special someone or a unique piece to brighten up your wall at home. Őri-Art Gallery is the place to head to.


Georgina: Visiting Őri-Art Gallery was a breath of fresh air. The atmosphere was inviting with bright and airy space along with the warmth of freshly brewed tea. We were unhurried throughout our visit and Ori was on hand to give as much information on each piece of art that caught our interest.


Opens: 9:00 (by appointment only)

Contact: Mr S. Ori

www.ori-art.com

Szentendre, Kör utca 3.
2000, Hungary +36-30-756-0088


If you do not have one day, why not visit Szentendre in Half a Day? Find out more and check availability on how to experience the best of this artists’ haven in half a day>


5 | Szentendre ArtMill

The ArtMill showcases temporary exhibitions of contemporary art by Hungarian and international artists. Three floors are dedicated to exhibitions while a spacious courtyard is used for special events.

Opens: 10:00 A.M.

Address: Szentendre, Bogdányi út 32, 2000 Hungary

6 | Szabo and Szamos Marzipan Museum 

Szentendre day trip from Budapest | timelesstravelsteps.com
Marzipan Museum Szentendre

An extraordinary food museum established in the 1930s by Matyas Szamos and Karoly Szabo that is completely dedicated to the making of marzipan, from history to the finished product. Marzipan, as you may know is a light confection, made with finely ground almond, sugar, honey or syrup and egg whites. Often made into fruit shaped sweets or covered in chocolate. The shop window displays a delectable assortment of beautifully crafted marzipan that beckons visitors to enter the shop. Once inside, sweets are not the only thing you will find here. This is no ordinary museum.

Exhibited over two floors, are meticulously crafted marzipan depicting scenes from fairy-tale, cartoon characters, bible stories, kings and queens of Hungary, celebrities, trains, and so much more. All immortalised using confection as a medium. Every piece exhibited is a wonderment and will have your attention, for sure. The impeccable creations to look out for are the models of the Hungarian Parliament Building, Princess Diana, 101 Dalmatians, and the Nativity scene. Each creation details the number of man-hours and its weight.

After the exhibition, there is a little shop where you could purchase some marzipan. The coffee is recommended. There is also a cafe next door with seating.

Open: Daily from 10:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M.

Address: 2000 Szentendre, Dumtsa Jenő u. 12


Read: A Fun Evening of Tapas in Seville


7 | Christmas Museum and Shop

Preserving Christmas magic is a cute little museum along the cobbled streets of this familiar small city founded by the Hubay family. The Christmas Museum and Shop in Szentendre is a place where visitors can enjoy the festive and magical Christmas vibe for 365 days! There is an incredible collection of Christmas decorations, unusual and traditional, cleverly crafted, beautifully adorned and well presented. Some exhibits are collections from the 1950s, simple and delicate while some others showcase intricate details. Overall, the Christmas decorations, representing various craftmanship along with Christmas cards tell the story of the last 200 years of festive history.

Open: 10:00 A.M.

Address: Szentendre, Bogdányi út, 2000 Hungary

8 | Annunciation Church in Szentendre

Locally known as Blagovestenska Church, the Annunciation Church is a Greek Catholic Church. Blagovestenska was originally a Serbian Orthodox Church, built in the mid-18th century when the Serbian and Bosnian people settled in Szentendre, fleeing the Turks.

Designed by Hungarian architect András Mayerhoffer, the Annunciation Church replaced a previous wooden church in 1752. Dedicated to Our Lady of the Annunciation, the church has a twenty-eight metre tower, topped with a bronze spire and represents the Rococo and Baroque style. The main entrance is an elaborate stone gate and oak doors.

Blagovestenska is conveniently located in the Main Square.

Open: Everyday from April to September. A small fee is charged.

Address: 2000 Szentendre, Fő tér 5

9 | Main Square | Széchenyi Fo Tér

The heart of the town is the triangular main square where an elaborate memorial cross stands. Erected in 1763 by the Serbian Trade Organisation in gratitude for being spared from the 1763 plague. Surrounded by delicate wrought-iron railings, the cross has inscriptions of the dates and its renovations across three centuries.

10 | Church Hill Szentendre

From the main square, a narrow cobblestone path leads up to a hillside, called Church Hill. A Roman Catholic church sits here with a statue dedicated to St John the Baptist in the foreground. The church is one of the oldest buildings in the town, with parts dating back to the thirteenth century.

*Georgina: The Church was closed when we visited in late March.

11 | Stroll the Danube Waterfront

The Danube waterfront is a short walk from the Main Square. Prominently signposted, so you are unlikely to miss it. Lined with terrace restaurants, deck chairs and benches, it is a popular spot to relax, people-watch or to simply enjoy a cup of coffee.

12 | Czóbel Park

If you have time, make your way to Czóbel Park, all the way down Angyal Street. The park is dotted with playful statues made of bronze.

Where to Eat at Szentendre

Szentendre day trips from Budapes | timelesstravelsteps.com
Hungarian chimney cake street vendor Szentendre

The town has a great selection of stores, cafes and restaurants selling Hungarian, Mediterranean and European food and beverages. You could try Hungarian chimney cake, Tokaji wine, Pálinka, salami, paprika powder and cheese tastings. If you are looking for specific places to go to, then we would suggest the following four.

1 | Álom Lángos

Szentendre day trip from Budapest | timelesstravelsteps.com

Álom Lángos is said to be the best for a popular Hungarian street food called Lángos. Eaten as a snack, Lángos is a deep fried flat bread topped with either sweet or savoury topping. The flat bread is made with flour, yeast, salt and pepper.

Where: Váralja lépcső, Szentendre 2000 Hungary

*Located near the Main Square

2 | Bistro St.André

Bistro St.André serves French, European, Central European, Hungarian, and International cuisines alongside Vegetarian and Vegan options. The mushroom risotto is very good.

Where: Duna Korzó 20., Szentendre 2000 Hungary

3 |  Folt Café

Folt Café is Szentendre’s best kept secret. It is a Café, Art Gallery, and Beer Garden all in one, hidden away in a quiet part of town. Many local artists come here for their morning coffee or in the evening to socialise with other artisans.

Folt is popular for its craft beers and turogomboc dessert. Turogomboc is a Hungarian cottage cheese dumpling blanketed in sour cream, fruit and a dusting of powdered sugar. Its flavour reminds you of cheesecake.

Where: Szentendre Kucsera Ferenc u. 11. 2000

4 | Adria Cafe

Welcoming and cozy, Adria Cafe is perfect for Greek or Mediterranean meals. They are also popular for their fruit tea.

Where: Kossuth Lajos utca 4., Szentendre 2000 Hungary


finally…

The unassuming town of Szentendre welcomes you to a charming community that comes from strong roots that include history, culture and art. The town gives a feeling that you have just slowly travelled in time. It may have been the cobblestone streets or the community itself that calls the riverfront their home. Whatever the reason may be, we were happy to have visited the lovely town of Szentendre, on a day trip from Budapest.

Szentendre day trip from Budapest | timelesstravelsteps.com

Just me, Georgina at the Danube waterfront, Szentendre

My sincere wish is that this comprehensive guide on a perfect day trip from Budapest is helpful to you in curating your very own itinerary when visiting Budapest, capital city of Hungary. If so, use the links embedded in this article to book your activities. Timeless Travel Steps earns a commission at zero cost to you for qualifying purchases and bookings. As always, we appreciate your continued support. You may also wish to buy us a coffee 🙂

Have a splendid time exploring and discovering the lovely town of Szentendre xoxo


What’s new on TTS



Szentendre day trip from Budapest | timelesstravelsteps.comSzentendre day trip from Budapest | timelesstravelsteps.com

Presently May 2022 News

presently May 2022 News | timelesstravelsteps.com

May 2022 – Travel News and More

Now that the fresh cold winds of winter are gone, the rains of early spring make her presence known. We are told, “April showers bring May flowers” – hopefully, not all plans get rained on in May 🙂 as normalcy in travel takes pace, cautiously.


 “The month of May is the pleasant time; its face is beautiful; the blackbird sings his full song, the living wood is his holding, the cuckoos are singing and ever singing; there is a welcome before the brightness of the summer.”  — Lady Gregory


We begin the sweet month of May 2022 with May Day, a glorious 3-day weekend along with ancient celebrations of folklores, and dancing.

The month of May is known as a month of transition. We move from spring into summer, with spring flowers blooming, birds chirping and delightful warm days in the northern hemisphere. With adorable bluebells and daffodils along with Hawthorn and Lily of the Valleys adorn the grounds. Beautiful mountains and colourful meadows make it perfect for biking through those scented lush fields. Whereas in the southern hemisphere, summer is long gone, autumn winds creep in and nights get chillier. May is definitely a time of change, wherever you are in the world.

One thing for sure though, that whichever hemisphere we are at, be it spring or autumn, May breathes new hope, joy for days ahead and much fun for travel adventures as more countries ease travel conditions for travellers.

presently May 2022 | timelesstravelsteps.com

Welcome to Presently May 2022, our monthly e-column

presently May 2022 | timelesstravelsteps.com
presently May 2022

If you have been thinking of travelling lately after these months of restrictions, it might just be the right time to do so. With none or relaxed travel entry rules, and low airline fares, along with warmer days, there seems no better time to pack a carry-on and board that flight!

Georgina: We undertook a trip to Budapest, Hungary in late March into early April 2022, and it was awesome. No PCR tests prior or post but only mask wearing during the flight, which I would do anyways. Travel was almost pre restriction times.

COUNTRIES WELCOMING VISITORS

Let’s take a look at some of the countries who are welcoming visitors with relaxed Covid entry rules as from May 2022. As rules change regularly, please ensure that you check for the most up-to-date information with the respective official government travel website before finalising your travel.

COUNTRIES IN EUROPE

1 | United Kingdom

— All travel restrictions for visitors are lifted. There is no requirement for the Passenger Locator Form, or to present a negative result upon arrival. Face masks are no longer mandatory and unvaccinated travellers no longer required to submit pre-departure tests. Check travel requirements for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.


2 | Cyprus

Cyprus. presently May 2022 | timelesstravelsteps.com
presently May 2022

If you are vaccinated or have recently recovered, there is no requirement to test to enter the country. Cyprus has also got rid of passenger locator forms as from April 18. Travel Safely to Cyprus.


3 | Czech Republic

All travel restrictions including the colour-coded system for various countries have been dropped. Travelling to Czech Republic.


4 | Greece

— As from May 2, all Covid rules and mask wearing are lifted. Check Travel Greece.


5 | Sweden, along with Denmark, Latvia, Norway, Poland and Hungary

have dropped all travel restrictions. Read more: Sweden; Denmark; Latvia; Norway; Poland; Hungary.

Recommended read: 30 Very Best Things to do in Budapest, Hungary.


COUNTRIES IN ASIA

1 | India

Bada Bagh Temple India | Presently May 2022 | timelesstravelsteps.com
Bada Bagh Temple India | presently May 2022

India has relaxed travel restrictions for tourists in light of a stable situation for cases of Covid-19. This means termination of air bubble arrangements and some travel returning to pre-Covid level of services. Before travelling to India, ensure you check:

1 | India’s current Entry Requirements and Restrictions;

2 | Coronovirus in India;

3 | If travelling as a tourist, you need to get a visa before travelling. Ensure you have a valid India Tourist e-Visa. This can be for a duration of 30 days, 1 year or 5 years depending on your needs and eligibility.

The UK Government – Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office ADVISES AGAINST ALL TRAVEL TO:

1 | The immediate vicinity of the border with Pakistan;

2 | Jammu and Kashmir, with the EXCEPTION of travel by air to the city of Jammu and within the city of Jammu, as well as travel within the Union Territory of Ladakh.

3 | Pahalgam, Gulmarg and Sonamarg, the city of Srinagar and the Jammu-Srinagar national highway.

Learn more on safety and security in India


2 | Singapore

presently May 2022 | timelesstravelsteps.com
Marina Bay Singapore | Presently May 2022

Since April 26, Singapore has eased travel restrictions for visitors. Fully vaccinated travellers are no longer required to take pre-departure tests and this includes children age 12 and under. However, unvaccinated visitors are still not welcome to the country. Read more on travel restrictions eased in Singapore.


3 | Thailand

Erawan National Park Thailand | timelesstravelsteps.com
Erawan National Park | presently May 2022

As from 1 May 2022, all travel restrictions related to Covid are relaxed. All fully vaccinated visitors no longer need to take a PCR test at either pre-departure or post arrival. However, you still need a Thailand Pass. Thailand Pass requires you to upload proof of vaccination along with a health insurance policy of up to $10,000. Unvaccinated travellers are no longer required to undertake a pre-departure PCR test but you need to be quarantined for five days upon arrival. On the fifth day, you need to undergo a PCR test. You are also required to show proof of hotel booking for the five days on the Thailand Pass form. Read more on Thailand entry requirements.


TRAVEL OFFERS — All-in-One Package

airport. May 2022 | timelesstravelsteps.com
presently May 2022

There is a great advantage to booking an all-in-one package holiday. A popular style of vacationing, you get to choose the type of holidays, either low cost or high-end without the stresses of booking at multiple sites. Additionally, some tour operators of package holidays provide the added services of a representative of the tour operator at the destination.

Recommended read: A Complete Guide to 10 Benefits of a All-in-One Holiday.

If you are looking for some very special deals, you may like some of the offers by our trusted partners presently have:

1 | SANDALS

presently May 2022 | timelesstravelsteps.com
presently May 2022

Make everlasting memories – save £££ and head to a luxury holiday resort that comes with an all-inclusive vacation package for Couples Only.

Everything is Included. All That’s Missing is You”

Save up to 45% plus up to an extra 5% off and up to £700 booking bonus.

*Offer ends June 6, 2022 > click on the graphic below


2 | EasyJet Holidays – Save £100 on your Summer 2022 Family Holiday

Save £100 on your Summer 22 easyJet family holiday (Minimum spend applies)

“last call” for peak summer – Selling out fast, secure your family holiday now!

Conditions: Save £100 off your holiday on minimum spend £1000

*Although EasyJet is promoting this as a family code but there are no restrictions on party size – anyone can use the code as long as the min spend threshold is met.

Validity: Valid on holidays 11th May 2022 to 31 October 2022 inclusive

Bookings: 9am 11th May 2022 to 11pm 17th May 2022

How: Code is FAMILY100

Terms and Conditions to take note of:

* £100 off per booking with promo code FAMILY100, min spend £1000. Spend/saving amount is per booking based on the total price and code must be applied on the ‘extras’ page of easyJet.com/holidays. Promo code valid for new bookings made between 9am on 11th May 2022 and 11pm 17th May 2022 for holidays completed by 31/10/22. Offer applies to all easyJet holiday destinations from any UK airport, subject to availability. Prices are subject to change. Offer may be changed or withdrawn without notice. Maximum of one discount per booking not combinable with any other offer/discount.

If a booking including this discount is changed/cancelled, the discount will no longer be valid on the new/amended booking. Booking Conditions apply. easyJet holidays Ltd (ABTA Y6633) is ATOL protected (11694).

Recommended read: EasyJet Holidays Protection Promise



TRAVEL OFFERS — ON THINGS TO DO

Presently May 2022 News

1 | English Heritage

English Heritage is the champion of some of England’s most treasured and iconic buildings and monuments. They are guardians of 400 historic places which encompass 6000 years of history. You can experience history and travel back in time at all of the 400 sites, including Stonehenge, Tintagel Castle, Osborne, Hadrian’s Wall and Dover Castle. While you can visit each historic place individually, you would benefit much with an English Heritage Membership. An individual membership starts at £66.00 a year but it costs far less now with the English Heritage 15% off Gift & Annual Memberships code.

Hadrian's Wall | May 2022 | timelesstravelsteps.com
Hadrian’s Wall | May 2022

With the warm weather coming our way, you can make the most of your weekends and free time exploring the priceless and historic properties in England with your membership. I was given an annual membership as a gift at Christmas and am absolutely going to enjoy the year visiting and exploring some of the 400 historic places.

Join from as little as £4.42 a month. Use code “EH2022” to redeem 15% off Gift & Annual Memberships. Code expires 31st May 2022. For use on NEW membership purchases only. 

If you are a non UK resident, you may not need an annual membership but perhaps, a discounted ticket for the duration of your visit to the UK. An Overseas Visitor Pass gives you access to 100 historic places for one price. You could select the sites and work them into your itinerary to suit without having the pressure of time to visit within a day or so.

Buy your English Heritage Overseas Visitor Pass

Buy your Annual English Heritage Membership: use code ‘EH202’ – valid till May 30, 2022. Click link below:


Stay Connected with Timeless Travel Steps for the latest and best tips on Travel


Recap of what has been happening since the last e-column in March

Presently May 2022

Yes, since March 🙂 I don’t really know where April went! 🙂 🙂

So, if you haven’t read TTS publication since, here they are:


finally…

bluebells.may 2022 | timelesstravelsteps.com
presently May 2022

While the happy earth looks at the sky, and sings, carpets of bluebells and daffodils cover the ground. Butterflies flutter in the air, reawakening the darling buds of May. With brighter and warmer days ahead along with some extraordinarily good deals on flights and package holidays, I shall be travelling more within the UK and to Europe than previously. Whilst I hope to bring new and more travel stories to you, travelling also means less time writing 🙂 but you shall always have the best from Timeless Travel Steps.

My sincere wish is for you to enjoy our articles, and if at all you find the information helpful to your travels, use the links to book your holidays or activities. We earn a commission at zero cost to you. As always, we appreciate your continued support. You may wish to support Timeless Travel Steps in other ways also.

As normalcy returns and we embark to explore more of our beautiful planet, remember also to travel consciously and safely.

May is a special birthday month in my household and I look forward to celebrating with my family whilst embracing all that this merry month has in store. I wish you to enjoy the warmer days ahead, whatever you get up to.

Georgina xoxo

May 2022

Please support the humanitarian efforts for Ukraine in any ways you can — here are some links where you could do so:

DEC Ukraine Appeal

UNICEF Ukraine Appeal

OXFAM Ukraine Appeal

PLAN INTERNATIONAL Ukraine Appeal



presently May 2022 | timelesstravelsteps.compresently May 2022 | timelesstravelsteps.com

30 Top Things to do in Budapest

budapest. timelesstravelsteps.com

Budapest | 30 Cool Things to do in Queen of the Danube

Visiting Budapest?

Welcome! This comprehensive guide has all the cool things to do in Budapest. In this guide, you shall find the 30 best things to do in Budapest that makes the capital city of Hungary famous, alongside with best tips for timeless experiences. This flexible guide is ideal for a three-to-five-day visit to the capital city of Hungary.

With settlements dating back as far as the Stone Age, a turbulent history, an interesting mix of medieval ruins and architectural marvels, along with endless cobbled streets and alleys, Budapest is a city worth exploring to your heart’s content.


things to do in Budapest | timelesstravelsteps.com

This article and related articles are sprinkled with affiliate links. We may earn a commission from qualified purchases and bookings at no additional cost to you. These links have no influence on the editorial content we produce. Our travel to Budapest, Hungary was 100% self-funded.


TTS Team off-season travel to Budapest, Hungary

We visited Budapest recently during the last week of March, just before the onset of the travel season in Budapest which begins in April. Travelling off-season has its benefits — less crowds, shorter queues, easy availabilities at restaurants, and opportunities for people-free photographs. The downside — some attractions may be closed. This was okay. We experienced the best of Budapest during our almost a week stay at ‘Queen of the Danube.’


BEST TIPS: Book tours and tickets in advance: Best tours in Budapest. Select the Budapest City Card for free entrance to museums, a guided tour, discounts and unlimited use of public transport.


What is Budapest famous for?

Budapest | Things to do at Queen of the Danube
Hungarian Parliament Building at dusk

Budapest is famous for its spectacular architecture and rich culture. The Hungarian Parliament Building dominates the shores of the historic Danube River and the magical Fisherman’s Bastion on the hills of Buda overlooks the great river. The stunning Dohány Street Synagogue, a 13th century St Mathias Church, the celebrated St Stephens Church, Central Market, Underground Caves, Ruin Bars, The Shoes and thermal baths along with its natural hot springs. The city’s historic Chain Bridge has become the symbol of the city. To top it all off, is the city’s European and local delectable gastronomy.

Read: The Complete Guide to Buda’s Old Town District

Exploring Budapest, Queen of the Danube

Budapest has 23 districts and it is a stunning city. The Hungarian capital runs an efficient tram and bus system, along with a modern high-speed train system. If you wish to use the local taxis in Budapest, use the app, Bolt (similar to Uber or Lyft). Most of your time, you will want to enjoy the treasure trove of baroque and neoclassical architecture alongside a piece of the city’s intriguing past without boarding the buses or trams all the time.

An enchanting Queen of the Danube is also best explored at dusk and into nightfall. The city is lit up like one big party stage!

While Budapest has so many beautiful and fascinating sites to explore on both sides of the Danube, this list on the 30 very best things to do in Budapest is by no means an exhaustive list. You are sure to find additional experiences while travelling to Budapest.

Timeless Travel Steps Best Tips:

For a quick overview of the best of Buda and Pest, the Danube, and the city’s history, begin with a 4-hour guided city tour. Transport included. Check availability

30 VERY BEST THINGS TO DO IN BUDAPEST, HUNGARY

If you are ready to explore, here are the 30 cool things to do in Budapest, Queen of the Danube. We begin with attractions in Pest (East of Danube), the bridges, followed by the unmissable attractions in Buda (West of Danube River). If you have time, you could also escape the city for a day and I have included an easy day trip to Szentendre. These are highly recommended, easily doable experiences, accompanied by best, tried and tested tips.

UNMISSABLE EXPERIENCES IN PEST, EAST BANK OF RIVER DANUBE

1 | Széchenyi  Thermal Bath in Budapest

One of our highlights in Budapest was our morning visit to the Széchenyi Baths. The Széchenyi Baths and Pool in Budapest is the most popular and largest thermal bath in the city. It is set within a breathtakingly beautiful castle-like historic ornate building in the city’s largest green oasis, Budapest City Park. Experiencing the Széchenyi Baths is one of the best things to do in Budapest.

Europe’s spectacular medicinal bath was built in 1913, with a cupola, baroque pools, and healing spring waters that feed 18 pools. Széchenyi also features a range of wellness treatments, steam rooms and 10 saunas. The temperatures in the pool ranges from 18 °C to 38 °C

Where: City Park, Budapest, Állatkerti krt. 9-11, 1146 Hungary

Cost: Széchenyi Bath Fast Track with Private Cabin starts from €25.00, purchased at the ticket window.

1.1 Timeless Travel Steps Best Tips;

The best time to visit Széchenyi Baths and Pool in Budapest is first thing in the morning. It gets really busy from 11:00 onwards.

2 | Pre-book your visit online and avoid the queues. Spend as much of a full day at Széchenyi Baths and Pool in Budapest and, afterwards take advantage of complimentary tasting of Hungary’s famous spirit “pálinka” on an optional guided tour inside the Pálinka Museum.

Check availability to Széchenyi Baths and Pool in Budapest


2 | Budapest City Park

Occupying an area of 302 acres, Budapest City Park is the largest green oasis in Budapest where the first trees were established in 1751. The millennium celebrations of Hungary in 1896 took place in this park. The City Park is home to a multitude of things to see and do.

The entrance to Budapest City Park is the Heroes’ Square. Within a short stroll, you shall find lawns, lakes, museums, castles, botanical gardens, a zoo and the world renowned Széchenyi Spa (#1 above).

3 | Vajdahunyad Castle Budapest

Located within the City Park is Vajdahunyad Castle Budapest, regarded as one of the most beautiful castles in Hungary. The Vajdahunyad Castle is a large castle complex that is home to the most interesting of historic buildings in Hungary. This beautiful fairy-tale castle is surrounded by a boating lake (in the summer) which simulates a moat surrounding medieval castles or an ice-rink (in winter). The castle was built in 1896 in celebration of the 1000th year of Hungary. This incredible castle complex boasts several architectural styles from the Middle Ages to the 18th century, including Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque.

When visiting, look out for the medieval tower by the entrance which was modelled in Hunyadis’ medieval Vajdahunyad Castle in Transylvania.

Presently, Vajdahunyad Castle Budapest is host to the Museum of Hungarian Agriculture.

The outdoor surroundings of the castle are freely accessible. There is a statue of a hooded figure, Anonymous opposite the main entrance to the exhibition hall. Anonymous was a 12th century monk who is the unknown notary of King Béla III. He is credited as the author of the first Hungarian history book, Gesta Hungarorum.

Just a few steps away from the Anonymous statue is a restaurant/bar, Anonymous Étterem. Ideally set by the lake, where we went for lunch. It was a quiet afternoon and prior booking was not needed.

Fun fact: Apparently touching the sharp end of the monk’s pen will make you a better writer.

Where: City Park, Budapest, 1146 Hungary


4 | Heroes’ Square Budapest

Heroes’ Square Budapest is one of the prime squares in the city. The Square is located at the end of Andrássy Avenue, a boulevard dating back to 1872, and recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site along with Buda Castle and the shores of Danube. At the Heroes’ Square, you shall find three main sites — Hall of Art, Museum of Fine Arts and the Millennium Monument.

The Millennium Monument includes two broad semi-circular colonnades with a central column. The central column stands at 36-metres high, topped by a statue of Gabriel, an archangel, holding a Holy Crown and two apostolic crosses. The colonnades on both sides hold bronze statues of Hungarian leaders


5 | Museum of Fine Arts Budapest

best things to do in Budapest | timelesstravelsteps.com
Museum of Fine Arts Budaoest | view from Heroes Square | March 2022 timelesstravelsteps.com

Towards the east of Heroes Square, about a three-minute walk is the Museum of Fine Arts Budapest. The museum is home to a remarkable collection of European Art spanning from ancient times to the end of the 18th century. In particular, the Museum of Fine Arts has a rich Egyptian Art Collection along with a Classical Antiquities Collection.

Where: Budapest, Dózsa György út 41, 1146 Hungary

Open: 10:00 A.M to 6:00 P.M | Closed on Mondays


6 | Andrássy Avenue Budapest

The Andrássy Avenue is one of the most emblematic boulevards in Budapest that links Erzsébet Square, near St Stephen’s Basilica to the City Park Budapest. A historic street of 2.4 kilometres that was formed between 1870 and 1876.

Andrássy Avenue is lined with trees, spectacular mansions, townhouses and buildings of elegant architecture along with stunning facades. It is also one of the renowned streets for shopping and you will find all the high-end labels. Nicknamed the ‘Champs-Élysées’ of Budapest, this is a boulevard where you can shop till you drop, escape to a quintessential cafe for a quick pick-me-up or simply window-shop and people-watch as you walk along, what seems an endless array of shops. Andrássy Avenue has been acclaimed as a World Heritage Site since 2002.

7 | Hungarian Parliament Building on the Danube River Budapest

things to do in Budapest | timelesstravelsteps.com
The Hungarian Parliament Building Budapest

Located on the Kossuth Lajos Square, in the heart of Budapest is the Hungarian Parliament Building. Its main facade overlooks the UNESCO listed banks of the Danube River. This formidable, majestic piece of architectural marvel stuns visitors and is the busiest as well as the most intriguing of attractions to experience in Budapest.

The Hungarian Parliament Building has stood testament to over a hundred years of history. You can explore the secrets within the walls of this monumental marvel by joining one of the timed-tours.

The Parliament building in Budapest is colossal. Designed by Imre Steindl, who astutely incorporated key numerical facts into the construction to demonstrate the structure’s importance, hence making it extraordinarily unique.

7.1 What to see in the Hungarian Parliament Building when you join a tour

things to do in Budapest | timelesstravelsteps.com
Hungarian Parliament Building Budapest

The guided tour of the Hungarian Parliament Building allows you to discover the beautiful, sometimes jaw-dropping interiors. During your visit, you will experience the Central Dome, the magnificent Main Staircase, the Dome Hall, the Upper House along with the Lounge.

The central dome is 96 metres high, signifying the year Hungary was formed — 896 AD. The inviting Main Staircase has stunning frescoes by the Hungarian painter, Karl Lotz. The staircase has 96 steps, leading to a magnificent hallway. The spectacular Hungarian Coronation Jewels is showcased in the Dome Hall.

The priceless Hungarian jewel, the Holy Crown of Hungary or more popularly known as the Crown of St Stephen is displayed in the Dome Hall and guarded 24/7. The Crown dates back to 1000 AD and is a beautifully molded piece decorated with pearls and gems.

Additionally, the Hungarian Parliament Building has 365 towers, to represent each day of the year. It has 691 rooms, 28 entrances, 10 courtyards and 29 staircases.

The Hungarian Parliament Building tour takes 45 minutes and includes ten to fifteen minutes of security check.

Where: Budapest, Kossuth Lajos tér 1-3, 1055 Hungary

Open: 8:00 A.M

7.2 Timeless Travel Steps Best Tips:

1 | The Hungarian Parliament Building is a top attraction in Budapest. Avoid waiting in a long line to obtain tickets and book online before hand. Alternatively, you could go to the Visitor Centre at the Parliament Building, and queue for the tickets. You could purchase one if there are any left in your preferred language.

2 | Plan ahead and Book your Guided Tour of the Hungarian Parliament Building.


8 | Shoes on the Danube Budapest

Shoes on the Danube

Close-by to the Hungarian Parliament Building, along the banks of the River, stands sixty-pairs of shoes cast in iron and anchored to the ground. The shoes face the Danube River. Varying styles and sizes can be seen, representing men, women and children. A symbol that no one was safe at that time in history — not man, woman or child.

Shoes on the Danube is a poignant reminder of a horrific time in history, where hundreds lost their lives as a result of the atrocities of the Arrow Cross militiamen in Budapest during the Second World War. The militiamen rounded up Jews in Budapest on the banks of the Danube. The Jews were forced to remove their shoes before being shot into the Danube, where the waters would carry them away. Made of leather, shoes were a valuable commodity during the war and the militiamen would either sell them or use it themselves.

The memorial was created by film director, Can Togay, and was erected on April 16, 2005. A plaque reads:

“To the memory of the victims shot into the Danube by Arrow Cross militiamen in 1944–45. Erected 16 April 2005”

Where: Budapest, Id. Antall József rkp., 1054 Hungary


9 | Budapest Opera House

One of the most elegant places in the heart of Pest, is the Budapest Opera House (Magyar Állami Operaház). A magnificent Neo-Renaissance building built between 1875 and 1884 features frescoes, statues of Puccini, Mozart, Liszt, and Verdi along with gliding marble and plush chandeliers. This historical and cultural venue in Hungary opened its doors in September 1884.

The Budapest Opera House is worth a visit. You could purchase a ticket for guided tours online or see one of the scheduled performances.

Where: Budapest, Andrássy út 22, 1061 Hungary

9.1 | Timeless Travel Steps Best Tip: How to Visit Budapest Opera House

Join the Discovery Tour of Budapest — a small group guided tour of Budapest that includes a visit to the Budapest Opera House. With this guided tour, you visit all the highlights in Budapest and learn the history along the way. Enjoy a panoramic view of the Danube from the Fisherman’s Bastion.

The Discovery tour of Budapest is highly popular and numbers are limited. Check availability and book early>>


10 | Liberty Square Budapest (Szabadsag Square)

A large green space in the heart of Pest, not too far from the Hungarian Parliament Building, the Liberty Square is worth a stop for a quick respite. There are many significant memorials such as the statue of Ronald Reagan, Michael Jackson along with a controversial monument. The park is surrounded by banking houses and buildings of notable architecture. There is an interactive fountain in the centre where kids can play.

Where: Budapest, Szabadság tér, 1054 Hungary


11 | St Stephen’s Basilica Budapest

Things to do in Budapest

Named after the Hungarian beloved first king, Stephen, St Stephen’s is a Roman Catholic place of worship. It is the largest church in Budapest and home to Hungary’s most sacred treasure, ‘The Holy Right’ — the mummified right hand of King Stephen who died in 1038.

St Stephen’s Basilica was built between 1851 and 1905, displaying an incredible Neoclassical architecture. By far the most impressive is the 300-foot dome with striking architecture. Framed by two bell towers, the largest bell in Hungary hangs on the southern tower. At 96 metres (314 feet), you could also climb to the viewing terrace for splendid views over the city.

To the viewing gallery: 302 steps up or an elevator + steps;

Where: Budapest, Szent István tér 1, 1051 Hungary

11.1 | Timeless Travel Steps Best Tips on St Stephen’s Basilica:

1 | Enjoy skip-the-line access along with a guided tour to St Stephen’s Basilica. Learn about its monumental artworks and an exclusive access to the dome for a panoramic view over Budapest. Check for availability now>>

2 | Listen to beautiful classical music in a unique venue, a timeless experience in St Stephen’s Basilica. Book your tickets ahead of performances>>

3 | Alternatively, experience an Organ Concert at St Stephen’s Basilica. The melody is performed by Kolos Kováts, one of the most famous and talented concerts and oratorio singers in Hungary. He received the Liszt Ferenc prize, Merit of Art and the Kossuth Prize. Check availability>>


12 | Cruise the Danube in Budapest

Marvel at the beauty and grace of this centuries old city when you embark on a Budapest river cruise along the Danube River in the evening. A leisurely cruise either during the day or evening makes a pleasant experience. Somehow, seeing Budapest from the waters makes the experience, special.

Budapest, also often known as ‘Pearl of the Danube’ or ‘Queen of the Danube’ is best experienced in the evening on a cruise. The grand buildings and the eclectic architecture are all beautifully lit in the evening. Watch a snippet of our experience along the Danube River – it was one of the best things in Budapest that we experienced.

Timeless Travel Steps March 2022

Most cruises take about 60 minutes for a complete loop. You will pass various landmarks including, the iconic Parliament Building, Buda Castle, Széchenyi Chain Bridge, Elisabeth Bridge, Fisherman’s Bastian and the Liberty Statue on Gellert Hill.

There are several cruises you could select from and you could take a look here>>

12.1 | Timeless Travel Steps Best Tips about Cruises on the Danube River

1 | We went on a one hour evening cruise along the Danube with a welcome drink. The commentary was excellent, highlighting the landmarks along with its history> Check availability

2 | If you prefer, opt for the hop-on hop-off open top bus package which includes a river cruise. Select from 24, 48 or 72 hours ticket to suit your itinerary. Routes and stops are carefully designed to maximise your experience of the historic city. Select your option>

13 | Explore the Jewish Quarter in Budapest

The Jewish Quarter Budapest is located in the heart of Budapest, in District 7 and is encircled by Király Street, Erzsébet körút, Dohány Street, Károly körút. It is the smallest district in Budapest but has the highest population density. Known as the party district of Budapest, the Jewish Quarter exudes a lively atmosphere of modern day lives, trendy restaurants, street art and galleries along with old history and historic landmarks. This gentrified neighbourhood is home to world famous synagogues, eccentric ruin bars (Szimpla Kert) and quirky design shops while offering a wide selection of cuisines to indulge as well.

A visit to the Jewish Quarter almost always tops a visitor’s list and a popular stop for guided tours. The Great Synagogue is located at Dohány Street and, just blocks away is the Rumbach Street Synagogue built in 1872. The synagogue in Kazinczy Street is also interesting. Each synagogue is aesthetically different while The Great Synagogue is a ‘must-see’ landmark in Budapest.

TTS Best Tip: Visit Szimpla Kert, a place full of life that serves food all day long with music and a lovely garden;


14 | Dohány Street Synagogue Budapest

The Great Synagogue, more popularly known as Dohány Street Synagogue is the largest synagogue in Europe and the second largest synagogue in the world. Without a doubt, this is one of the best things to do in Budapest, an unmissable site in Budapest and you may wish to add it to your itinerary.

The Dohány Street Synagogue features an inspiring 1200-metre-square hall in a splendour of coral red and gold leaf. It is split into two sections, with gallery seating for women and men downstairs.

On the outside, there is a mass grave that commemorates the 2000 Jews killed during the Holocaust. A little further down the corridor, there is Raoul Wallenberg Park with its metal willow Memorial Tree. Each leaf on the tree bears the name or number of a Holocaust victim.

The Great Synagogue is home to AM Rosenblum Jewish Museum. The Museum showcases the outstanding collection of Jewish artefacts including textiles, ritual silver and paintings.

In the basement of the Great Synagogue is the recently opened museum that tells the history of the Jewish Quarter, the persecution endured during the war, Ghetto, the Yellow Star Houses and much more.

14.1 | Timeless Travel Steps Best Tips for Visiting the Great Synagogue Budapest:

1 | You can only visit the Dohány Street Synagogue on a guided tour. Book your fast track ticket to The Great Synagogue before visiting and join the guided tour at the designated time. After the guided tour, you will have plenty of time to explore the museums and learn more at your own pace. Check availability and book your tickets>

2 | Jewish Heritage Walking Tour with a guide

3 | Jewish Cuisine and Culture walk in Budapest


15 | New York Café Budapest

New York Café Budapest | things to do in Budapest

Be transported to an era of elegance at the New York Café, Budapest, a meeting place for the local bourgeois. Built in Neo-Renaissance style with marble columns, sparkling chandeliers, stunning frescoes and gilded details, the New York Cafe is definitely a place to experience if you have the time.

The New York Café in Budapest opened its doors 128 years ago. It is a place for tourists to enjoy coffee, and dobos torte in an opulent setting.

Dine-in only.

Open daily: 8:00 A.M. to 12:00 A.M.

Where: Budapest, Erzsébet krt. 9-11, 1073 Hungary


16 | Margaret Island Budapest

Margaret Island is a tranquil, green oasis within the capital city of Hungary. The island is rather small, measuring 0.5 kilometres wide and 2.5 kilometres in length. There are defined pedestrian paths around the parkland, jogging tracks, sports centre, and a swimming pool along with ruins of a 13th century convent and a musical fountain.

To reach Margaret Island, you need to either walk across the Margaret Bridge or take a taxi but the taxi will drop you off at the barriers to the park. No vehicles are allowed on the island.

17 | Margaret Bridge, Budapest

Budapest things to do at Queen of the Danube | timelesstravelsteps.com

Margaret Bridge in Budapest is the second oldest public bridge in Budapest and is a three-way bridge, connecting Buda and Pest across the Danube while also linking Margaret Island. The bridge leads to the banks of Margaret Island.


18 | Elisabeth Bridge Budapest

Elisabeth Bridge connects Buda to Pest on the narrowest part of the River Danube, spanning only 290 metres.

Named after their endearing Habsburg queen, Elisabeth, known as Sissi, Elisabeth Bridge was originally built without riverbed pillars. However, during World War II, the bridge was blown up in 1945. The bridge was beyond repair and a new bridge was commissioned in 1960. The new Elisabeth Bridge was built in the same place, standing on its old pillars with added width. It was completed in 1964.

19 | Széchenyi Chain Bridge, Budapest

things to do in Budapest | timelesstravelsteps.com

Széchenyi Chain Bridge spans the River Danube, connecting Buda in the west and Pest in the east of Budapest. Designed by William Clark, an English engineer and was built by Adam Clark, a Scottish engineer. The Széchenyi Chain Bridge opened in 1849 and was the first permanent bridge in Budapest.

19.1 | Timeless Travel Steps Best Tips on Bridges in Budapest

If you have the time, walk across at least one of the bridges when you are in Budapest. It is a great opportunity for some awesome photos. If you do not wish to walk through it, you do not have to. Hop onto a sightseeing bus, and enjoy the views that are ahead of you as you cross the Elisabeth Bridge – Gellert Hill and the Liberty Statue. It’s awesome!


UNMISSABLE EXPERIENCES IN BUDA, WEST BANK OF RIVER DANUBE

20 | Fisherman’s Bastion Buda